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PREFATORY NOTE BY THE TRANSLATOR.
HE idea and aim contemplated in the Meyer series
of commentaries, as also the general plan laid down for the work of translation, has been already
explained by Dr. Dickson in his Preface to the Epistle to the Romans, and elsewhere. The merits, also, of Dr. Lünemann as a coadjutor of Meyer, have been sufficiently discussed by Dr. Gloag in connection with his translation of the Epistles to the Thessalonians. It only remains to add, that the aim in the translation of this commentary has been to give a faithful and intelligible rendering of Lünemann's words, and in general to produce a worthy companion volume to those of the series already issued. It is hoped that a comparison with the German original will show the work has not suffered in the process of transferring to our own soil.
It will be admitted that the commentary of Lünemann on the Hebrews—of which the first edition appeared in 1855, the second in 1861, the third in 1867, and the fourth, enlarged and greatly improved, in 1874–has claims of a very high order in a grammatical and lexicographical respect. He threads his way with a nice discrimination amidst a multitude of conflicting interpretations, and generally carries conviction with him when he finally gives his own view, or that in which he concurs. Even where, as in the case of some three or four controverted explanations, he may not have weighed the whole argument in favour of an opposite view, he has at least revealed to us the process by which his own conclusion is reached, thereby contributing to place the reader in a position for forming an independent judgment for himself.
The opinions of Dr. Lünemann, as regards the position occupied by the writer of our Epistle towards the Scriptures of the Old Testament, have been expressed with great candour. Unfortunately no one seems to have made the questions here raised a matter for any very prolonged and detailed examination since the time of John Owen. With the eventual answer which shall be given to these questions will stand or fall the claim of Barnabas to the authorship of the Epistle, and many other things besides.
It is, however, by his grammatico - critical and purely exegetical labours that Lünemann has rendered the greatest service to the cause of sacred literature. The judicious use of his commentary can hardly fail to lead to a more intimate acquaintance with the letter and spirit of this apostolic writing, well styled by the Helmstädt professor Walther a “beyond all measure profound epistle."
Of the very abundant exegetical literature pertaining to the Epistle to the Hebrews, our space admits of the mention of but a very few writings. Nor was it needful to give an account even of all that have been collated in preparing this translation. Most of the German commentaries published after the middle of the eighteenth century were entirely overshadowed by the appearing of the great work of Bleek, and those of subsequent writers. For many particulars concerning the authors specified in the following list, more especially of those who flourished about the time of the Reformation, I am indebted to the kindness of the Rev. James Kennedy, B.D., librarian of New College, Edinburgh. To the list of works enumerated might be fittingly added the suggestive translation of the New Testament made by Sebastian Castellio (1542-1550), mostly during the time of his retirement in Basle.
M. J. E.
FOR THE GREEK FATHERS.
Cramer (J. A.), S. T. P. : Catena Graecorum Patrum. Tomus vii.
8vo, Oxonii, 1814.
ON THE VULGATE TEXT.
JUSTINIAN (Benedict), + 1622: Explanationes in omnes Pauli Epistolas.
FRANCISCO DE RIBERA : Commentary.
8vo, Col. Agr. 1600.
CLARIO (Isidore) [Clarius]: Novum Testamentum Latinè, adjectis scholiis. Authore Isidoro Clario.
8vo, Ant. 1544.
LUDOVICUS DE TENA: Commentary.
folio, Toleti, 1611.
PRIMASIUS, Bishop of Adrumetum, sixth century: Commentary on
the Epistles of Paul. That on the Hebrews is by some attributed to Haymo, Bishop of Halberstadt, † 853.
ON THE GREEK TEXT.
ABRESCH (Peter), Professor at Groningen, † 1812: Paraphrasis et Annotationes.
Leyden, 1786–90. [Continued by Vitringa to end of chap. vii.
1817.] BAUMGARTEN (S. J.), † 1757, and SEMLER: Erklärung des Briefes.
Halle, 1763. 7
BIESENTHAL (J. H. R.): Epistola Pauli ad Hebraeos, cum rabbinico commentario.
Berol. 1857. BisPING (A.): Exegetisches Handbuch zu den Briefen des Ap. Paulus (vol. iii.]
Münster, 1855–63. BLEEK (Franz), + 1859: Der Brief an die Hebräer. Berlin, 1828–40. Der Hebräerbrief erklärt. Edited by Windrath.
Elberfeld, 1868. BULLINGER (Heinrychus), + 1575: In omnes Apostolicas Epistolas, Divi videlicet Pauli xiiii. etc. Commentarii. [P. 639-731.]
fol. Tiguri, 1549.
CAMERON (John), Professor at Saumur, † 1625: Annotationes in N. T. Edited by Lewis Cappel.
1628. CAPPEL (Jacques), + 1624: Observationes in Epistolam ad Hebraeos.
8vo, Sedan, 1624. CARPZOV (J. B.), Professor at Helmstädt, + 1803: Sacrae Exercita
tiones ex Philone Alexandrino. 8vo, Helmst. 1750. CRAMER (Johann Andreas), Professor at Kiel, † 1788: Erklärung des Briefes an die Hebräer, 2 parts.
DE WETTE (W. M. L.), + 1849: Kurze Erklärung, etc.
Leipz. 1844, al. DELITZSCH: Commentar zum Brief a. d. Hebr.
Leipz. 1857. [Eng. transl., T. & T. Clark, 1868. DICKSON (David), + 1662: Short Explanation of the Epistle to the Hebrews.
8vo, Aberdeen, 1649. [See also Romans.] D'OUTREIN (Jan.): Zendbrief ... aan de Ebreen, ontleidet, uitgebreed en verklaard.
EBRARD (H. A.), Professor at Erlangen : Commentar über den Hebräerbrief.
Königsberg, 1850. [Eng. transl., T. & T. Clark, 1853.] EWALD (G. H. A.), Professor at Göttingen, + 1876: Sendschreiben an die Hebräer.
GERHARD (John), + 1637: Commentarius super Epist. ad Hebraeos.
8vo, Jenae, 1661. GOMAR (Francis), Professor at Leyden, † 1641 : Analysis Epistolae
Pauli ad Hebraeos. Opera (pp. 285–380]. Amstel. 1644. GOUGE (W.), D.D., † 1653: Commentary on the Epistle to the Hebrews. 2 vols.
fol. Lond. 1655. [Reprinted 1866, 1867.] GUERS (E.): Etude sur l'Epître aux Hébreux. Genève et Paris, 1862.